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Truth, it’s often said, is the first casualty in war. But as author GRAHAM WILSON has pointed out in his book Bully Beef and Balderdash Volume II: More myths of the AIF examined and debunked, it’s not just the military players in the thick of the action but also the historians who perpetuate military myths. Graham sadly died in 2016, but CATHY McCULLAGH, the editor of Graham’s books, recalls this debunker and stickler who was determined to reveal the truth.
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Articles in this issue

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Archive Discoveries

  • Who would have thought that in the largely homogeneous country of China that there could be a group of people who could trace their lineage back to invading Romans? TONY GREY uncovered this intriguing bit of information while travelling in China, and here he tells how he came to write his historical novel, The Tortoise in Asia, which tells the story of Romans travelling along the Silk Road in ancient times. Read on >
  • gr highlights cookbooks to buy for the discerning foodies in your life. Read on >
  • We chat to aspiring astronaut and sci-fi writer S J Kincaid on haunted graveyards, Star Trek, and her new YA galactic thriller, The Diabolic.  Read on >
  • The author of The Woman Who Changed Her Brain: And other inspiring stories of pioneering brain transformation, busts long-held conceptions about how our minds function. Read on >
  • Australian novelist NICOLA MORIARTY is the youngest of six siblings, two of whom – Jacyln and Liane – are also accomplished novelists. Her latest novel, The Fifth Letter, examines the relationships of a group of friends after a letter-writing dare uncovers a festering cache of secrets andr esentment. ANGUS DALTON reports. Read on >
  • AOIFE CLIFFORD is the winner of the Scarlet Stiletto Award for one of her crime stories, but All These Perfect Strangers is her first novel. The Melbourne-based crime novelist talks with us about New Year’s resolutions, her Irish poet grandfather and the similarities between writing a novel and creating a papier-mâché puppet.  Read on >
  • Find out about the inspiration behind the bestselling brilliance of Graeme Simsion's The Rosie Project, his new novel The Best of Adam Sharp, and how he made a name for himself by dressing as a duck. Read on >
  • Writer MIKE LUCAS and illustrator JENNIFER HARRISON tell gr about Olivia’s Voice, a new picture book about a deaf girl. Read on >
  • Ed Yong – science reporter for The Atlantic and blogger for National Geographic – has just published his first book, I Contain Multitudes: The microbes within us and a grander view of life. We asked him to tell us about his reading life.   What are you
reading now?
 Patient H.M. by 
Luke Dittrich, because 
my editor for my own 
book sent me a galley
 copy! I’m glad she
 did. Henry Molaison 
was arguably the most
influential patient in
all of neuroscience.
 After an operation to
cure his epilepsy, he lost the ability to form new memories – think Memento – and so taught us much about how our memories work. Dittrich is the grandson of the surgeon who operated on Molaison, and he brings a deeply personal flavor to the incisive reporting and colourful writing that characterise this book. What are your three favourite books?
 The Song of the Dodo: Island biogeography in the age of extinctions by David Quammen is natural history writing at its finest – a witty, insightful tour of the planet’s islands and what they tell us about our increasingly fragmented world. The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell offers genre-hopping stories but delivers a deep fable about hope and nihilism; I stared silently out a window for the longest time when I finished 
it. Being Wrong: Adventures in the margin of error by Kathryn Schulz is a wondrous study of human error that blends literature, science and philosophy. Read on >
  • ANGUS DALTON meets British historian, journalist and author L S HILTON as she publicises the most hotly anticipated thriller of 2016, Maestra. Read on >
  • ABC journalist and science writer IAN TOWNSEND cut his teeth as a novelist in 2007 with Affection, which told the story of a plague outbreak in 1900. His next novel, The Devil’s Eye, was longlisted for the Miles Franklin Award in 2009. Now with Line of Fire, he turns his pen to narrative non-fiction to tell the story of Richard Manson, an 11-year-old boy who was accused of espionage and shot by the Japanese during World War II in New Guinea. Read on >

Book Reviews in this issue

  • It’s been over 25 years since the first Maisy books were published, and Maisy Goes Swimming was among them. Of course, if she’s going swimming, Maisy has to get undressed and we need to help her. Her blue hat and scarf first, then her brown boots and her red coat. Little tags on every page help us to put Maisy in her bright stripey swimsuit. Read on >

  • Maisy’s been for a holiday, she’s been for a sleepover and even visited a museum. Now it’s time to go the bookshop. She’s amazed how many books there are, which makes it very hard for her to choose. But Ostrich, the shopkeeper, helps her to find a lovely book about birds, just right for her friend, Tallulah. She meets her other friends – Charley, Cyril and Eddie – who all share their favourite books with one another. At story time Ostrich reads a book to them about a dinosaur. Then it’s off to the café where the food is so yummy. Read on >

  • This is a true story written by the author of such memorable picture books as Queenie: One Elephant’s Story and The Dog on the Tuckerbox. It’s a love story about a man and his pet gibbon and it’s beautifully presented with soft, wistful illustrations. Read on >

  • This is an extremely important book for every school and municipal library to have on its shelves. It’s written so that very young children will understand the injustice of it all, and the older ones in primary school will want to discuss the history of those days, which are written up in detail in the last pages of the book. Read on >

  • With a strong sense of contemporary Australian culture and a protagonist who is relatable, this story will stay with you. It’s a stirring tale brimming with the conflicts of youth growth and it offers a thoughtful take on issues relevant to the lives of many children. Read on >

  • The magical realism in Laura Ruby’s novel is beautifully rendered. The action switches seamlessly between Finn – his complicated home life and his new relationship with Petey – and Roza’s new life with the unrecognisable man. The conclusion is satisfying but perhaps too abrupt. Nonetheless, the love story, the search for Roza and the hope that Finn and Sean will finally be the winners will keep you reading. Read on >

  • I really admire how these two authors have co-written this book. The story is told from dual points of view. Jess expresses herself so capably, while Nicu tugs at our heartstrings with his broken English. The book is written in verse, which means, with fewer words on each page, the impact is so much greater. Read on >

  • Author Sara Barnard incorporates text message formatting to show the conversations between Steffi and Rhys, which makes them just like any other teenagers. Her novel is accessible and engrossing, even if you have no experience with social anxiety or hearing impairment. Read on >

  • If you want to do something a bit more creative with a spiraliser than grind out salad garnishes, then this book fills the bill. Read on >

  • By examining one man’s distinguished legal career, we get the opportunity to reflect at length on humanity’s dark side and become aware of the limitations of the law. Read on >

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The Paris Collaborator